Orchestral music that’s fast, cheap, and pretty well under control

Put the hay down where the goats can get it, that’s my philosophy. If you want to get newbies interested in classical music, make it easy for them to get at. The Seattle Symphony’s kicking off its season tonight with a cheap and informal sampler of works they’ll play this season: individual movements from Beethoven’s Fifth and other symphonies, with show-off pieces like Strauss’s Don Juan. Come for a taste—it’s just $10—then come back later this season if you like for the whole piece. Saturday night is the official opener, neither cheap nor informal: a gala with star cellist Yo-Yo Ma and an all-French program (if you count Gershwin’s An American in Paris). Various combos of dinner, drinks, and dancing are available in packages that start at $450 (tickets for the concert alone are sold out).

Fri., Sept. 14, 7 p.m.; Sat., Sept. 15, 7 p.m.

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